You are likely to have invested a substantial sum in the purchase of your static caravan, so purpose designed insurance may be a priority well worth giving your home away from home.
But what do you need to know when buying your static caravan insurance?
Firstly, in most cases, you are not obliged to take your site owner’s own insurance. You are free to shop around for the cover. The site owner may ask for proof that you have arranged your own static home insurance and may charge a nominal fee to see the paperwork. Even with that fee taken in to account, however, shopping around for the cover (using a service such as ours), you could still save money.
- whenever you are arranging insurance, the value of the insured item is an important consideration – and static caravan insurance is no different;
- the total sum insured represents the maximum amount the insurer pays out in the event of a total loss (if the caravan is consumed by fire, for example);
- when deciding that total sum, therefore, you might want to take into account the cost of replacing your caravan;
- depending on the policy you choose, this might be its current market value, or replacement as new – the latter may typically be more expensive, of course, and is available for caravans less than 3 or 5 years old (regardless of the number of previous owners);
Risk of flooding
- during many British winters, flooding – from swollen rivers or rising tides – may cause widespread damage and caravan parks are likely to be especially vulnerable;
- for that reason, our static caravan insurance policies here at Cover4Caravans reflect the postcode of the park on which it is pitched, so that discounts may be made if yours is in a flood-free area;
- you might check on the vulnerability of your particular caravan park by searching the Environment Agency’s map of threats of flooding from rivers and the sea;
Public liability insurance
- the owners and managers of the park or resort accommodating your static caravan are almost certain to have asked for proof that you have public liability insurance;
- this element of cover is designed to ensure that fair and adequate compensation is received by visitors to the park, your neighbours there, or other members of the public who have suffered an injury or had their property damaged through some negligence on your part as the owner of the static caravan;
- public liability claims such as this may assume very significant proportions and it is usual, therefore, for cover to be provided against claims of at least £1 million – and sometimes £5 million;
Out of season precautions
- many parks for static caravans close down for at least part of the winter season – and this might be a time when yours is especially vulnerable to break-ins, theft or damaged caused by electrical or gas faults or the escape of water;
- when arranging your insurance cover, therefore, you might want to establish what additional security measures your insurer demands during this closed season – and whether, for example, your premiums are discounted at all if the site has taken particular security measures, such as CCTV or manned patrols of the site;
- you may also be expected to take certain common sense precautions when leaving your caravan empty and unoccupied for any length of time – including the disconnection of all electrical and gas services and draining down the water from heating, kitchen and bathroom systems.
By keeping these considerations firmly in mind, you may be certain of arranging the static caravan insurance you need – at a competitive price.
Like many straight forward questions, the answer may be both yes and no:
- there is no legal requirement for your touring caravan to be insured, although your car insurance may extend to third party cover for the trailer – for the protection of other road users and property owners who may suffer injury, loss or damage from the caravan you are towing;
- but that third party cover only applies whilst your caravan is being towed on the road or in another public space, and offers you no compensation in the event of loss or damage to your caravan;
- whilst not compulsory, therefore, you might consider it prudent, at the very least, to arrange touring caravan insurance;
- by their very definition, static caravans are not going to be towed about behind your car, but remain pitched on your chosen park or resort;
- although it may be free from road traffic accidents, however, your static caravan and its content remain at risk from some potentially devastating risks as fire, flooding, impacts, theft and vandalism – caravan insurance is your principal defence against such risks;
- caravan insurance is not compulsory, but it is clearly a prudent decision to arrange the protection it provides;
- in the case of a static caravan, however, there may be an exception to the compulsory need for insurance;
- the management of the park or resort on which it is pitched may insist that you also buy caravan insurance at the same time that you are paying the annual lease fees;
- subject to the express terms of your lease agreement, however, it is almost always possible to decline the management company’s offer and arrange insurance yourself – from a reputable provider such as ourselves at Cover4Caravans, for example;
- nevertheless, it is not uncommon for lease agreements to include provisions that make some form of static caravan insurance compulsory – and if you have not bought it from the park’s management company, you may still need to show them proof that you have it;
- what site managers are likely to be specifically interested in is provision within your caravan insurance for indemnity against public liability claims;
- as the owner of the caravan, you already have a legal duty of care to take every reasonable precaution against neighbours, visitors to the park and members of the public from injuring themselves or having their property damaged through any kind of contact with your static caravan;
- park owners have an interest in ensuring that you have sufficient insurance cover against such claims, so that anyone who is injured or has their property damaged is at least certain of the financial compensation provided for by your public liability insurance.
Although caravan insurance may not be compulsory, it remains your first line of defence in its protection against loss or damage. If yours is a static caravan, you are likely to find that the management of the park on which it is pitched, insist on a sight of insurance cover that provides public liability indemnity as a minimum.
Can you feel the excitement beginning to build? As the temperatures rise, and the days grow longer, Easter is traditionally the time of year for one of the first outings in the new caravan season.
This year, there are again four days of public holiday – Friday the 14th of April until Monday the 17th of April – which also fall within schools’ Easter holidays. Tag on a few extra days from your annual leave allowance from work, of course, you might easily make your first outing of the year last up to ten days or so.
So, let’s suggest some of the top 5 destinations you might want to head off towards this Easter – just remember to make sure that your touring caravan insurance is up to date:
- South east England
Where better to get that first taste of spring but the Garden of England – or, for that matter, anywhere in the south east.
This is an area that seems to have it all for a family holiday in your touring caravan – some spectacular coastal scenery, the South Downs, beaches, promenades and buckets and spades.
You’ll even find an organised Easter egg hunt at Alfriston Clergy House, a short drive away from the Camping and Caravanning Club’s site at Normans Bay – which history buffs will also know marks the spot where the Normans landed in 1066.
- South west England
The south west of England is one of the first parts of the country to feel the warmth and sunshine of Spring – so you might want to head off to Cornwall to bag your share of all that fine weather this Easter (fingers crossed!).
The county has a number of campsites that are open all the year round, so they are probably in full swing by the time you get there for Easter.
Carnon Downs Caravan Park is an excellent base from which to explore the whole of Cornwall, as it is right in the heart of the county, near Truro, and therefore midway between both north and south coasts.
Read our special feature on gardens to visit in the south west in our latest newsletter here;
Arley Arboretum in Worcestershire has pulled out all the stops for a family-themed Easter.
In addition to the year-round Dinosaur and Fairy Trails, the holidays also incorporate and Easter Trail, Easter Egg Colouring Competitions, hands on with baby chicks, and various sessions organised by the Forestry Adventure Club – to cap it all, kids go free during the whole period from the 8th until the 23rd of April.
The Camping and Caravanning Club’s site at Wolverley is only 4.4 miles from Arley Arboretum.
- North west England
Spring could be just the time of year for enjoying your own “wandering lonely as a cloud, to come across a host of golden daffodils” – to paraphrase the poet William Wordsworth, as he walked the fells of the Lake District.
Herdwick Croft Caravan Park, on the shores of beautiful Bassenthwaite, might be the ideal spot to pitch your touring caravan and to take advantage of the handbook and guide the site has published to Easter activities in the Lakes.
If you are north of the border, you already know that the Easter holidays in Scotland omit the Monday as a bank holiday.
Undaunted, though, why not hitch up your ‘van, take a few extra days of annual leave and enjoy all that the Scottish countryside has to offer come Springtime.
Faskally Caravan Park is near Pitlochry in the very heart of Scotland’s Highland Perthshire, so perfectly situated for exploring the immediate surroundings and further afield.